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Headword: *foinikh/i+a gra/mmata
Adler number: phi,787
Translated headword: Phoenician letters
Vetting Status: high
Lydians and Ionians [call] the letters [thus] from their inventor Phoinix the son of Agenor; but Cretans disagree with them, [saying that] the name was derived from writing on palm leaves [phoinika]. But Skamon[1] in his second book on Discoveries [says] that they were named from Phoinike the daughter of Aktaion. Legend tells that this man[2] had no male children, but had daughters Aglauros, Erse, and Pandrosos; Phoinike, however, died while still a virgin. For this reason Aktaion [called] the letters Phoenician, because he wanted to give some share of honor to his daughter.
Greek Original:
*foinikh/i+a gra/mmata: *ludoi\ kai\ *)/iwnes ta\ gra/mmata a)po\ *foi/nikos tou= *)agh/noros tou= eu(ro/ntos: tou/tois de\ a)ntile/gousi *krh=tes, w(s eu(re/qh a)po\ tou= gra/fein e)n foini/kwn peta/lois. *ska/mwn d' e)n th=| deute/ra| tw=n eu(rhma/twn a)po\ *foini/khs th=s *)aktai/wnos o)nomasqh=nai. muqeu/etai d' ou(=tos a)rse/nwn me\n pai/dwn a)/pais, gene/sqai de\ au)tw=| qugate/ras *)/aglauron, *)/ershn, *pa/ndroson: th\n de\ *foini/khn e)/ti parqe/non ou)=san teleuth=sai. dio\ kai\ *foinikh/i+a ta\ gra/mmata to\n *)aktai/wna, boulo/meno/n tinos timh=s a)ponei=mai th=| qugatri/.
For other accounts of the introduction of writing, see alpha 69, gamma 416, kappa 21, kappa 22, lambda 568.
[1] Skamon of Mytilene (C4 BCE), sigma 531: see FGrH 476, where the present passage is F2.
[2] See alpha 1034.
Keywords: aetiology; botany; children; dialects, grammar, and etymology; ethics; geography; historiography; mythology; women
Translated by: Catharine Roth on 13 February 2002@16:18:03.
Vetted by:
David Whitehead (added notes and keyword; cosmetics) on 14 February 2002@03:24:55.
Catharine Roth (corrected cross-reference) on 14 February 2002@10:48:58.
Catharine Roth (added cross-reference) on 23 September 2002@00:39:02.
David Whitehead (restorative cosmetics) on 18 July 2003@03:43:12.
David Whitehead (another keyword) on 6 October 2005@10:19:16.
David Whitehead (more keywords) on 18 December 2013@07:05:54.


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